The 5 Piece French Wardrobe, Explained

It’s not what you think it is.

By Jenn Rose Smith

Fear not: the 5 piece French wardrobe isn’t nearly as hardcore as it sounds. It doesn’t mean limiting your closet to only 5 pieces, one of which is a blue and white striped tee. In fact, it’s really more of a shopping diet meant to curb consumerism and keep your closet full of things you truly love. There’s beaucoup information floating around online about the method, so we’ve chosen to take our advice straight from the source: Vogue magazine and the French-est of all French it girls, Jeanne Damas.

According to Vogue, step one of the 5 piece French wardrobe technique is to edit your closet down to nothing but the basics: solid, well built classics that you’ll wear over and over again. (Think jeans, white shirts, black dresses, a great trench.)

After that, the ethos is that you buy exactly 5 trend-driven pieces per season, but they must work well with the basics you already own. (So yes, you can still have those insane gold metallic cowboy boots, just as long as you can figure out how to pair them with pieces already in your closet.) Using Jeanne as our guide, we’ve put together a little list of 5 basics pieces every French wardrobe needs along with 5 fun splurge items for this fall. Scroll down to discover your new French wardrobe, mon amor.

all images by jeanne damas

Jeanne Damas 5 Piece French Wardrobe

Classic Piece: Camel Trench
Trend Driven Piece: Animal Print Bucket Bag

Jeanne Damas 5 Piece French Wardrobe

Classic Piece: Levi’s 501 Jeans
Trend Driven Piece: Graphic Tee

Jeanne Damas 5 Piece French Wardrobe

Classic Piece: Floral Sundress
Trend Driven Piece: Straw Netted Bucket Bag

Jeanne Damas style

Classic Piece: Cream Cardigan
Trend Driven Piece: Block Heeled Ankle Boot

Jeanne Damas 5 Piece French Wardrobe

Classic Piece: Black Pumps
Trend Driven Piece: Canvas Jumpsuit